Background and purpose
Market surveillance in Germany is carried out independently by the individual federal states according to federal regulations. The powers of the Marktüberwachungsbehörden (market surveillance authorities) come from Regulation (EU) 2019/1020 (Market Surveillance Ordinance), the Market Surveillance Act (MüG) and the Product Safety Act (ProdSG).
To protect consumers, the product safety department checks technical non-food products within the framework of the Product Safety Act (ProdSG), takes dangerous articles off the market, or prevents them from going on the market in the first place.
In order to ensure a constantly high level of protection for all consumers, products from outside the European Economic Area are checked before import.
Legal foundation of market surveillance
Consumer protection regulations in the European Union aim for a consistently high level of safety for everyone in the EU. In the area of product safety for non-food products, the EU has issued regulations that define the framework for market surveillance.
The EU has issued guidelines for the various groups of non-food products, which are implemented by the individual member states through national regulations. In Germany, these directives are implemented by ordinances relating to the Verordnungen zum Produktsicherheitsgesetz (Product Safety Act).
The technical details for specifying the basic safety requirements for certain products and product groups, which are specified in the EU directives, are developed in the form of harmonised EN standards. Further information on harmonised EN standards can be found, for example, on the website of the Deutsches Institut für Normung e.V. (DIN).
In order to ensure a uniform implementation of this legislation in market surveillance, the competent authorities in Germany have developed a German manual based on the European manual (‘Blue Guide’), according to which they carry out market surveillance.
- Blue Guide - European guide (PDF, 148 pages, German)
- Instructions for carrying out market surveillance in Germany (PDF, 2.0 MB, 151 pages - Länderausschuss für Arbeitsschutz und Sicherheitstechnik (State Committee for Occupational Safety and Security Technology-LASI), German)
Regulation (EC) No. 765/2008 forms the framework for controls from third countries. The European Commission has created guidelines as an instrument for customs and market surveillance authorities, which are made up of ‘general guidelines’ and ‘practical instructions’ and are intended to improve cooperation between the authorities.
Guidance on import controls for safety and compliance of products (PDF, 19 pages, German)
Public relations and consulting
Recalls and warnings from international companies are usually initiated by these companies themselves in coordination with the market surveillance authorities and implemented in the media. It is the task of the market surveillance authorities to ensure that dangerous or non-compliant articles are withdrawn from the market or rectified accordingly. They will immediately get in touch with the affected Hamburg economic actors and ensure that the necessary measures are implemented promptly.
Current product recalls and notifications can also be found in English via Rapex.
Who to contact
Hamburg’s Referat Produktsicherheit (Product Safety Department) ensures that dangerous technical products do not come to market or are withdrawn from the market.
Head of department:
Telephone: 040 42837-3089
For general inquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org
Central fax number: 040 4273 -10096